Fair and open public engagement? - Oceana USA
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May 4, 2018

Fair and open public engagement?

On Friday, April 27, 2018, Oceana and other non-profit organizations joined a public engagement call hosted by the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE). The stakeholder call was focused on proposed changes to the Well Control Rule – a move to relax some of the few offshore drilling regulations that were put in place following the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. Oceana knows that more drilling and less safety is a recipe for disaster.

Unfortunately, about 12-minutes after the briefing began, Oceana’s participation was dropped from the call. Oceana staff attempted to reconnect. After redialing, the operator said they were directed to not reconnect Oceana to the call. It appears that Oceana and other interested stakeholders were deliberately excluded.

Oceana campaign director Diane Hoskins wrote a letter to Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke and BSEE director Scott Angelle expressing frustration and requesting an explanation for the exclusion of important stakeholders, like Oceana.

By excluding key members of the interested public – the Administration is placing serious doubt about the fairness and legality of their public engagement process.

Read the full letter here.